Saturday, 21 March 2015

Blacking cruise: Day 1

Adrian came up to the boat yesterday afternoon, arriving about 6.30 having done shopping on the way.  I came up after work, arriving about 11.30.  Adrian had found the boat surprisingly warm -- and had done the little bit of dewinterising necessary, and got the fire going.

Over the winter, a lot of work has been done on the Navigation Inn next to the marina, but there's still a lot to do.

This morning, we started by doing a car shuffle, taking one to tomorrow's destination.  We got the boat ready to cruise -- but when we turned the key, even with a lot of pre-heating and a some throttle, we couldn't get the engine to start.  There was an ominous clicking noise among all the others, and we feared for the starter motor.  After a number of attempts, and looking under the engine boards, Adrian phoned RCR.  We put the kettle on and killed time until an engineer arrived at almost 2pm.  He turned the key and listened a couple of times, then nodded sagely.  He prodded the stop button a few times, then tried again -- and the engine burst into life.  He said pressing the stop button like that would have freed the stop solenoid, and that it's always worth a try.  WW wondered whether he couldn't have suggested that on the phone, but we'll know to give it a go if it happens again.

So we set off at 2pm, in cold and breezy conditions.  There were lambs in the fields at Yardley Gobion.

The canal was much busier than we'd expected.  We passed eight boats coming the other way, between the marina and the locks at Stoke Bruerne.  They were pumping water into the canal from the Rover Tove below the locks.

A boat was coming out of the bottom lock as we approached.  We swapped with another boat at the next lock.  Adrian worked the bottom two, and then I did the next three.  We'd decided that the long pound would be a good place to stop, and by the time we got there it was 4.45pm and we were both pretty cold.  There was plenty of space, so we picked a spot on a straight section.  Another boat has arrived from the north, too.

Tomorrow is meant to be sunnier and less windy, which will be a plus.

5 miles, 5 locks.


Leo No2 said...

Good choice to stay in the Long Pound - no mooring in the village north of the Woodland Walk at the moment. Might see you in the morning perhaps.

Carol said...

Give Kath our regards when you see her. x